CRIME
02/18/2014 03:52 pm ET

North Korea Torture Drawings Document Harsh Treatment In Country's Prisons

United Nations

A report documenting crimes against humanity committed in North Korea is accompanied by chilling drawings composed by a man who spent six years in one of the country's prison camps.

News coverage of Kim Kwang-il's drawings comes as United Nations investigators compared the torturous conditions imposed by North Korean officials as Nazi-like in their systematic brutality, according to Reuters.

Below are Kim's drawings accompanied by details from the report.

  • United Nations
    Kim described the "pigeon torture," depicted above in which "we are bound to stay in that position until the jailer feels that you have been tortured enough. So the torture goes on until the time has come to the satisfaction of the jailer. This is the pigeon torture. This is a very strange word in Korea and to you. Your hands are bound back and if they tie you like this, your chest comes out forward and in this position you are tortured."
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    Kim told the panel, "We are supposed to think there’s an imaginary motorcycle and we are supposed to be in this position as if we are riding the motorcycle. And for this, we pose as if we are airplanes ourselves. We are flying. And if we stand like this there’s no way that you can hold that position for a long time. You are bound to fall forward. Everybody in the detention centre goes through this kind of this torture."
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    The UN report found: "decisions, actions and omissions by the State and its leadership caused the death of at least hundreds of thousands of people and inflicted permanent physical and psychological injuries on those who survived."
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    The prisoners were brought to the prison camps in train wagons originally meant to carry animals, the report said. "
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    "The State has used food as a means of control over the population .... The State has also used deliberate starvation as a means of control and punishment in detention facilities. This has resulted in the deaths of many political and ordinary prisoners."
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    From the report: Mr Kim explained that he had to crawl on his hands and knees into the cell he shared with 40 other prisoners, because the entrance door was only about 80 cm high. The guards told him that “when you get to this prison you are not human, you are just like animals, and as soon as you get to this prison, you have to crawl just like animals.”

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